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Samsung Executive Sheds Little Light on Tizen’s Future

April 21, 2014 - Written By Cory McNutt

Word on the street is that Samsung is trying to leave the Android operating system that brought them to such prominence.  Samsung would rather think it was their devices that caused their meteoric success in the smartphone and tablet industry…but we all know better than that.  While Samsung might not like to admit that Android helped in their success, they are smart enough to know that without Applications, there is little success for a new operating system – or existing one for that matter; just ask BlackBerry and Microsoft.  Although, they might just be arrogant enough to think that if they provide us with enough Samsung application, such as their streaming music service, Milk Music, we might just buy into the entire Samsung ecosystem.

Our source reported about an interview that Wonpyo Hong, Samsung’s President of the Media Solutions Center had with the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) concerning a number of topics – one that included a little Tizen discussion.  The first topic of discussion was the adding of a premium paid subscription to Samsung’s Milk Music App – it had been like listening to an FM radio broadcast with both music and commercials or ads.  For $3.99 per month, you can have the ad-free version – kind of like mimicking Pandora’s ad-free music.  Milk Music is powered by Slacker and 380,000 have downloaded the Application and is limited to only a handful of Samsung devices, but Hong hopes to expand the App to more of its devices.

It is rather difficult to get a direct, straight answer out of any Samsung executive when it comes to Tizen.  One minute they will tell you it is one of the platforms that Samsung would like to offer…among a number of choices, but then in the next sentence they will tell you that Samsung would like to offer a ‘common’ platform for use in their mobile, television and home appliances.  Yong also said they would like to offer more products that use Tizen besides their Gear smartwatch…sounds to me that Samsung would like to use Tizen in all of the products, including mobile.

Yong also indicated that Samsung would be active in mergers and acquisitions (M&A), although I think the emphasis will be on the acquisitions end – what better way to quickly build up your own ecosystem than by buying existing applications and making them part of the Samsung ‘family.’  He also does not think that the name ‘Tizen’ is of importance to a customer – they want a great product, regardless of how it works on the inside.  I do not quite think that Samsung realizes the loyalty there is to iOS or Android, although maybe the majority of customers that walk into a Verizon store, for instance, do not understand what OS they are getting, simply the device.  Do you think Samsung is correct in their assumptions or is it just the techies that really care about that stuff?  Please let us know on our Google+ Page what you think about that…as always, we would love to hear from you.